No one quite knows where the “urban legend ” about poinsettias being poisonous came from. It probably was started by the same joker who told the one about Daddy Longlegs being the most poisonous spider. First, Daddy Longlegs aren’t even an arachnid species. Next, they are NOT poisonous and neither is this lovely plant!
This plant is a member of the euphorbia genus–that means that it has a milky sap like all the other plants in that genus. You have probably seen it if you have broken off a large enough leaf or stem.
Some people might be bothered by this sap. I can’t say that I have known anyone who has reacted to it, but supposedly it is possible. It’s just something to know. I wouldn’t worry about it.
One thing to worry about is keeping these plants warm. They come from tropical climates so they need a warm room in your home, they need to be kept out of drafts, and by all means, if you live in the frozen north like I do, never leave them in a cold car! In fact, make sure to protect them with a sleeve or bag on the trip from the store to your home.
There are so many choices in colors and styles that there are Poinsettias for almost everyone. The only people who can’t grow them are, ironically, people like me, who keep their homes too cold.
So I buy them for others who I know will enjoy them–and who have warm enough homes. It’s called living vicariously.